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Sofia Gruskin

Sofia Gruskin

Professor of Preventive Medicine and Law, Director, Program on Global Health and Human Rights, Institute for Global Health

Last Updated: Monday, September 18, 2017

Telephone: (323) 865-0826
Fax: (323) 865 0103
699 Exposition Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90089-0074 USA Room: SSB 318J

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Sofia Gruskin directs the Program on Global Health & Human Rights at the USC Institute for Global Health and holds appointments as Professor of Law and Preventive Medicine at the Gould School of Law as well as Professor of Preventive Medicine at the Keck School of Medicine. She leads the USC Law & Global Health Collaboration alongside USC Professors Alexander Capron from the Gould School of Law and Charlie Kaplan from the Peck School of Social Work.
A pioneer in global health and human rights, Gruskin’s work, which ranges from global policy to the grassroots level, has been instrumental in developing the conceptual, methodological and empirical links between health and human rights, with a focus on HIV/AIDS, sexual and reproductive health, child and adolescent health, gender-based violence, non-communicable disease, and health systems.
Current partners include the World Health Organization, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), IPAS, Open Society Foundation, and local organizations and universities in Brazil, India and Vietnam.
Gruskin sits on numerous boards and committees including the PEPFAR Scientific Advisory Board and the Technical Advisory Group for the Expert Group on the Health and Human Rights of Women, Children and Adolescents jointly initiated by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) and the World Health Organization (WHO). She is Co-Coordinator of the Rights-Oriented Research and Education Network for Sexual and Reproductive Health (The RORE Network), an international network of sexual and reproductive health and rights researchers and advocates.
In recent years Gruskin served on the Board of Directors for the Guttmacher Institute, the Institute of Medicine’s Committee for the Outcome and Impact Evaluation of Global HIV/AIDS Programs Implemented Under the Lantos/Hyde Act of 2008 (PEPFAR), the Technical Advisory Group of the UN Global Commission on HIV and the Law, and the UNAIDS Reference Group on HIV and human rights. Gruskin was with Harvard University’s T. H. Chan School of Public Health for many years where she served as Adjunct Professor of Global Health; Director of the Program on International Health and Human Rights and Associate Professor in the Department of Global Health and Population; and Co-Director of the Inter-departmental Program on Women, Gender and Health.
Gruskin has published extensively and serves on the editorial boards of The American Journal of Public Health, Global Public Health, Reproductive Health Matters and Revue Tiers Monde.
Gruskin received her masters in International Affairs from the Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs in 1993. She received her JD from Yeshiva University’s Benjamin N. Cardoza School of Law in 1990.

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  • Leading the Realization of Human Rights to Health and Through Health. Report of the high-level working group on the health and human rights of women, children and adolescents. (World Health Organization, 2017).
  • Health and Human Rights in a Changing World (with M. Grodin,  D, Tarantola,  and G. Annas, eds.) (Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group, 2013).
  • Perspectives in Health and Human Rights (with M. Grodin, G. Annas, and S.P. Marks, eds.) (Routledge,Taylor & Francis Group, 2005).
  • Health and Human Rights:  A Reader (with J. Mann, M. Grodin, and G. Annas, eds.) (New York:  Routledge, 1999).


  • “Killed by Police: Quantifying Misclassification in Vital Statistics and Validating Media-Based Demographic Data (Massachusetts, 2004-2016)” (with J. Feldman, B. Coull, and N. Krieger N). American Journal of Public Health (2017).
  • “Engaging Human Rights in the Evolving Zika Virus Epidemic” (with J. Rasantham and S. MacCarthy). American Journal of Public Health, vol. 107, no. 4, p. 525 (2017).
  • “Human Rights, Gender and Infectious Disease: From HIV/AIDS to Ebola” (with L. Stemple and P. Karegeya). Human Rights Quarterly, vol. 38, p. 993 (2016).
  • “Monitoring HIV-Related Laws and Policies: Lessons for AIDS and Global Health in Agenda 2030” (with M. Torres et al). AIDS and Behavior, vol. 21, no. 1, p. 1 (2016).
  • “No ‘Shared Governance’ Without Attention to Law, Broadly Conceived” (with A. Capron). American Journal of Bioetics, vol. 16, no. 10, p. 54 (2016).
  • “Human Rights and the Sexual and Reproductive Health of Women Living with HIV – A Literature Review” (with Shubha Kumar et al). Journal of the International Aids Society, vol.18, supplement 5, p. 17 (December 2015).
  • “Men’s Violence Against Women and Men Are Inter-Related: Recommendations for Simultaneous Intervention” (with Paul J. Fleming et al). Special Issue, Social Science & Medicine, vol. 146, , p. 249 (2015).
  • “Sexual Rights as Human Rights: A Guide to Authoritative Sources and Principles for Applying Human Rights to Sexuality and Sexual Health” (with Alice M. Miller et al). Reproductive Health Matters, vol. 23, no. 46, p. 16 (2015).
  • “Sound and Fury – Engaging with the Politics and the Law of Sexual Rights” (with Alice M. Miller et al). Reproductive Health Matters, vol. 23, no. 46, p. 7 (2015).
  • “Advancing Sexual Health Through Human Rights: The Role of the Law” (with Eszter Kismoedi, Jane Cottingham, and Alice M. Miller). Special Issue, Global Public Health, vol.10, no. 2, p. 252 (2015).
  • “Air Pollution, Health, and Human Rights” (with Jonathan M. Samet). Lancet Respiratory Medicine, vol. 3, no. 2, p. 98  (2015).
  • “Applying Human Rights-Based Approaches to Public Health: Lessons Learned from Maternal, Newborn and Child Health Programs” (with Allison Smith-Estelle and Laura Ferguson). Etude de la Population Africaine, vol. 29, no. 1 p. 1713 (2015).
  • “Is the Right to Health Compatible with Sustainability?” (with Daniel D. Reidpath and Pascale Allotey). Journal of Global Health, vol. 5, no. 1, p. 010301 (2015).
  • “Reproductive Justice and the Pace of Change: Socioeconomic Trends in US Infant Death Rates by Legal Status of Abortion, 1960-1980” (with Nancy Krieger et al). American Journal of Public Health, vol. 105, no. 4, p. 680 (2015).
  • “Searching for Justice and Health” (with Daniel Tarantola and Kenneth Camargo). American Journal of Public Health, vol. 105, no. 8, p. 1511(2015).
  • “The HIV Care Cascade: Models, Measures and Moving Forward” (with Sarah MacCarthy et al). Journal of the International AIDS Society, vol. 18, no. 1, p. 19395 (2015).
  • “Why History Matters for Quantitative Target Setting: Long-Term Trends in Socioeconomic and Racial/ Ethnic Inequities in US Infant Death Rates (1960-2010)” (with Nancy Krieger et al). Journal of Public Health Policy, vol. 36, no. 3, p. 287 (2015).
  • “Climate Change and Human Rights: Roles, Responsibilities, and Action” (with Madhury Ray). Human Rights Defender, vol. 23, no. 1, p. 14 (2014).
  • “Global Health Justice.” Review of Global Health Law, by Lawrence O. Gostin. Lancet vol. 384, no. 9947, p. 945 (2014).
  • “HIV and Gender-Based Violence: Welcome Policies and Programmes, But Is the Research Keeping Up?” (with Kelly Safreed-Harmon et al). Reproductive Health Matters, vol. 22, no. 44, p. 174 (2014).
  • “What’s Pregnancy Got To Do with It? Late Presentation to HIV/AIDS Services in Northeastern Brazil.” AIDS Care, vol. 26, no. 12, p. 1514 (2014).
  • "Realigning Government Action with Public Health Evidence: The Legal and Policy Environment Affecting Sex Work and HIV" (with G. Williams and L. Ferguson). Culture, Health and Sexuality, vol. 16, no. 1 p. 14 (2013).
  • "Identifying Structural Barriers to an Effective HIV Response: Using 2010 NCPI Data to Evaluate the Human Rights, Legal and Policy Environment" (with L. Ferguson, T. Alverson, G. Peersman, and D. Rugg). Journal of the International AIDS Society, vol. 16, (2013).
  • "Human Rights in Health Systems Frameworks: What is There, What is Missing and Why Does it Matter?" (with S. Ahmed et al). Global Public Health, vol. 7, no. 4, p. 337 (2011).
  • "The Impacts of AIDS Movements on the Policy Responses to HIV/AIDS in Brazil and South Africa: A Comparative Analysis" (with A. Nunn, S. L. Dickman, and N. Nattras). Global Public Health, vol. 7, no. 20, p. 1031 (2012).
  • "Are Drug Companies Living Up to Their Human Rights Responsibilities? Moving Toward Assessment." PLOS Medicine, vol. 7, no. 9 (2010).
  • "Rights-Based Approaches to Health Policies and Programmers: Articulations, Ambiguities and Assessment" (with D. Bogecho and L. Ferguson). Journal of Public Health Policy, vol. 31, no. 2, p. 129 (2010).
  • "Using Human Rights for Sexual and Reproductive Health: Improving Legal and Regulatory Frameworks" (with J. Cottingham et al). Bulletin of the World Organization, vol. 88, no. 7, p. 551 (2010).
  • "Human Rights in the Global Response to HIV: Findings from the 2008 UNGASS Reports" (with L. Ferguson, G. Peersman, and D. Rugg). JAIDS, vol. 52, supplement 2, S104-S110 (2009).
  • "Government Regulation of Sex and Sexuality: In Their Own Words" (with L. Ferguson). Reproductive Health Matters, vol. 17, no. 34, p. 108 (2009).
  • "Using Indicators to Determine the Contribution of Human Rights to Public Health Efforts: Why? What? And How?" (with L. Ferguson). Bulletin of the World Health Organization, vol. 87, no. 9, p. 714 (2009).
  • "Justice and Human Rights: Priority Setting and Fair Deliberative Process" (with N. Daniels). American Journal of Public Health, vol. 98, no. 9, p. 1573 (2008).
  • "Health, Development and Human Rights." Australian Journal of Human Rights, vol. 13, no. 2, p. 1 (2008).


The Washington Post
February 14, 2018
Re: Orin Kerr

Orin Kerr had comments cited about a possible payment President Donald Trump's lawyer made to an adult-film star to remain silent about a sexual relationship with Trump. “All Cohen says is that he used his personal funds to ‘facilitate a payment of $130,000,'” Kerr writes. “To ‘facilitate’, the dictionary tells us, means to assist with or to make something easier. Given that, I would think that the most literal reading of Cohen’s statement is just that he used his own funds to arrange the payment.” MSNBC also cited the comments.


Jonathan Barnett
December, 2017

"The Costs of Free: Commoditization, Bundling and Concentration," Journal of Institutional Economics.

Edward Kleinbard
December, 2017

Edward Kleinbard wrote an op-ed, “Tax Bill Demonstrates our Nation's Upside Down Fiscal Priorities," posted to The Hill on December 21, 2017.

Jonathan Barnett
December, 2017

Jonathan Barnett participated in a panel discussion on “Supreme Court Patent Cases: Oil States and SAS Industries”, Patent Disputes Forum South, Beverly Hills, CA.